Lat bar

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KenDowns
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Lat bar

Post by KenDowns » Thu Mar 03, 2011 11:18 am

I've been reading these forums for a few months, and have bought into the arguments that the 6 core lifts are the most efficient way to build overall strength, and the corresponding argument that machines (think: leg extensions) are not so useful by comparison.

So now my workout is the core 6 + upright rows, planks, and bridges, and I'm doing no machine exercises..... except one: Lat bar pulldowns.

My reason, i think, is the same as many others: I can just barely do 7 unassisted bodyweight pullups, and this does not give me any kind of workout that will lead to gains.

So my first question is, is there any difference between the various assistance methods (or advantage in using one over another): self-assisted, resistance bands, or lat bar?

Second question is, am I better off working in that one set of 7 unassisted, then doing more sets with assistance, something like: warmup, unassisted bodyweight, assisted set 2, assisted set 3?


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Post by teafan » Thu Mar 03, 2011 12:04 pm

Seven is still a good start - why dont you focus on building your pull up numbers as the primary goal and add the assistance work in afterwards? I would personally go and try three sets of five, then three sets of six, then three sets of seven... adding some assistance afterwards

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Post by DavidMcF » Thu Mar 03, 2011 12:53 pm

Yeah I'd keep doing pull ups - they're great!

Then you can progress to Muscle Ups , which are basically ultra pull ups!

http://www.beastskills.com/tutorials/tutorials/53

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Post by teafan » Fri Mar 04, 2011 4:31 am

As an aside, I've been trying to increase my pull ups to 3 x 10 for the past three months, and I've done alright going at this as described (seem to acheive 10, 9, 8 as standard) - but i've always struggled to hit the 3 x 10. I have recently chopped this goal up and go at it in a different way - aiming to hit the total reps but breaking it down into a lot more sets. I managed to do 5 x5 Wide Grip and 5 x 5 close grip (alternating between them) last friday... suddenly, I'm less driven to aim for my 3 x 10 :grin:

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KenDowns
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Post by KenDowns » Fri Mar 04, 2011 2:06 pm

teafan wrote:Seven is still a good start - why dont you focus on building your pull up numbers as the primary goal and add the assistance work in afterwards? I would personally go and try three sets of five, then three sets of six, then three sets of seven... adding some assistance afterwards
Thanks, that's what I decided to do. I started really easy with 5 sets of 2, getting in 4 on the last one. I'll probably stick to 4 sets of at least 3, then 4x4, and so on.


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Post by KenDowns » Sun Mar 13, 2011 5:14 pm

By way of wrapping up, today I managed 3-4-3-4-4, so it's clear that doing the "real thing" has given 1 or 2 additional reps per session. Thanks for the recommendation.

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Post by teafan » Mon Mar 14, 2011 5:59 am

Good work - i'm glad it's working for you!

I started out working on my pull-ups using a wide grip, plams facing away - i then started to superset them with close grip, palms facing me... this has added additional sets to my workout but i seem to be able to take them alot better. My arms are the weak point so if i switch the grip a bit i can hit the bar longer. Give it a try!

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Re: Lat bar

Post by tyciol » Fri Mar 18, 2011 3:27 pm

KenDowns wrote:is there any difference between the various assistance methods (or advantage in using one over another): self-assisted, resistance bands, or lat bar?
Yes. Lat pulldowns have the advantage of being easy to use in that you are more stable (no fear of falling off a band or a chair) and that you have more specific numerical feedback about what you are pulling. You can also more easily switch resistance to do things like drop sets.

The comparative disadvantage of the other means are, it's hard to tell just how much you're assisting with your legs, the assistance can vary and be too much or too less. Bands can also wear out over time under heavy loads like your body weight, although hopefully by the time that happens one is doing high rep and able to do so with the bodyweight.

Advantages these two have that the lat pulldown doesn't is that you can do techniques like isometric pauses at peak contraction and slow heavy eccentrics with a weight greater than that which you're able to pull concentrically. Some people like those techniques, while others prefer to focus on attaining the concentric skills.

Although, if you have a spotter to help get the bar down you could use those types of techniques on a lat pulldown too.

Other advantages to the other types is you get the sensation of moving your body through space, which might help in feeling comfortable if nervousness was sapping the attention in a pull up.


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